On the trestle
Kettle Valley Trestle with Dan's family
Well, just a few days to catch up on. Sorry if I type a little slow, I'm (Dan) back on the Dvorak keyboard; I'll master it yet. Anyhowways, about those couple days to catch up on, the 21st is where we last left off, and it went a little something like this...
We stayed with Ashley's family since Dan's had company already. On the 21st though we did go to Vernon to go for a bike ride, the Kettle Valley Trestle trail. It goes over eighteen old train trestles that were finished back in 1914, burnt up in the Kelowna fires of 2003, and rebuilt by a small army of volunteers. The trail was a little over 10km and looked like it declined from where we started but once we were riding the slope was unperceivable. While reading one of the informatively educational signs we learned the difference between a Ground Squirrel and a Chipmunk (size and the line on the eyes). We also found a nice Wild Rose, a few tunnels, and some flowers that matched Ashley's borrowed bicycle nicely. That excursion was topped off with all we could eat watermelon (well, who could ever get enough watermelon).
Flowers and bike
The bicycle is purple, I swear!
Then onto the Summerhill Pyramid Winery where we took a tour and did a tasting. Quite the character the owner of that place; very much into making sure the wine gets the right "energy". Even though neither of us felt the energy in the pyramid (where the wine is aged), Dan did feel thirsty, and a little bit clepto.... They did have some very tasty wines, and some very nice grounds.
From there John (Dan’s uncle) went home to start cooking dinner. Irma really wanted to show us a multi-million dollar winery; Mission Hill Estate (the owner is apparently single; Ashley won‘t deny she figures she‘s found her mom a suitor). Unfortunately it’s gate was closed, so instead we went to Quail’s Gate (which ironically doesn’t have a gate; closed or otherwise). It has some beautiful grounds and awesome views. We didn’t do a tour at that stop, but did spend a little while in the wine tasting area; only Ashley and Irma partook this time, and designated a wine that would do nicely for dinner. I’d tell you that we had a Bar-B-Q salmon and pasta, but I wouldn’t want to make you jealous.
The next day
was super lazy, and a template I hope to use throughout our journey. Most of it was spent meandering around the thriving metropolis of Armstrong. We wandered in and out of quaint little shops, chatting with owners and picking up things I’m certain we needed. Stopping at the local eatery for lunch, ice cream, and road snacks (cheese curds in this case!!!).
For Wednesday we headed back to Vernon to have one last visit with Dan’s cousins, Jenny and Candice. It was another relaxing day highlighted with a trip to Davidsons Orchard for frozen yogurt/ice cream and the petting zoo. We also stopped at Planet Bee to find the queen and try the honeys (different flavours I believe are natural). Then, back to Armstrong for supper and the night.
Thursday was a day of driving and computer related frustrations (why couldn’t we get it!?!?!?!?!?). We were glad to arrive in good ol’ Banff. More driving occurred Friday, had to drop of the Duster (321,000+ km baby!!). Samantha picked us up and we went to visit Stephanie and little Maria. We had lunch with them and also took the down time to resolve the DanDellPurolator (mostly Dell murmle murmle
Quail's Gate Winery
Oh my word, let's live here.
murmle) fiasco of 2010. Later we went to pick up Brent, then met up with Ashley’s mom who drove us to Cowtown to actually pick up our laptop. Following that was a drive around Calgary; hilarious, but I won’t bore you since it’s one of those you-had-to-be-there moments.
Finally we stopped the whirlwind visiting in Banff; two low stress days (three nights) before we left. The Saturday was low key; Ashley went shopping on her Nana’s behalf, Dan went to the bank for some last minute things. Then out for Ashley and her Nana’s Happy B-day dinner.
Sunday was also not so busy. The four of us went shopping (for what I can’t remember, probably food or something else not so vital) but we had forgotten our tickets to check if we had won fifty million. After sitting around the house for a very short while, Ashley and I headed out for one last walk around Banff. Along the way we got engaged, then proceeded to get slurpees from the Mac’s, and checked lottery tickets (I can neither confirm nor deny our winning status). We then made sure that everything would fit in our bags and that they
At Davison's Orchard
FIrst of a long line of best ice cream tasting.
came in under weight.
Monday morning. The morning. The day we departed. It was a flurry of nerves, showers, and full bladders. During the drive to the airport, Ashley felt it was time to confess to Dan that, “Looking at you makes me nauseous.” Jokes on her; she’ll be travelling with him for quite some time. Quick good-byes were said and one small hiccup (Ashley’s multi-tool in security) and we were on our way.
That should be everything until we left. We’ll keep trying to catch up without leaving too much out.
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